Smitu Kothari – rest in peace

Smitu Kothari
Smitu Kothari

Just heard the sad news from Rani (Khawar Mumtaz) in Lahore about Smitu Kothari’s sudden and unexpected departure from this world.

Last I met Smitu it was in 2004, when I interviewed him about his late friend, the Pakistani activist Omar Asghar Khan, for a documentary commissioned by Asia Foundation broadcast on Geo TV. During the same trip I interviewed his father Rajni Kothari, a meeting he facilitated, for another documentary in the Asia Foundation/Geo TV series, on Eqbal Ahmad.

Besides being an ardent environmental and freedom of information activist, Smitu was one of the earliest and most genuine advocates of Pakistan-India peace. May he rest in peace.

His cremation is at 4 pm today in Delhi. Deepest condolences to his aged father and his family, including a 12-year old daughter.

p.s. Found this news item which gives some details…
http://www.sindhtoday.net/south-asia/77983.htm

Environmentalist Smitu Kothari dies of cardiac arrest

New Delhi, March 23 (IANS) Smitu Kothari, 59, one of India’s leading
social and environmental activists, died of a cardiac arrest early
Monday at the All India Institute of Medical Sciences.

Kothari was editor of the Lokayan Bulletin published by the Lokayan
group which promotes dialogue between NGOs and the rest of the world.

He also co-edited Ecologist Asia with other environmentalists
including Vandana Shiva, Claude Alvares and Bittu Sahgal and has been
a visiting professor at Cornell and Princeton universities.

P.S. March 27: Amit Sengupta’s obituary on Smitu in Hard News – excerpt:
“Now, that he has become bark and sky and earth, and now that the saline waters are still soaked inside the eyes and hearts of his father, wife, brothers, friends, strangers and comrades, it’s the tree of life which must hold his eyes and his mind, like leaves, flowers and seeds, as his legacy of regeneration, retreat and resistance”
http://www.hardnewsmedia.com/2009/03/2772

Advertisements

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: